1. drayelya
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    drayelya Member

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    Trouble with characters...

    Discussion in 'Character Development' started by drayelya, Dec 22, 2010.

    Hello everyone, I'm here for character development help (Obviously lol). My problem is the fact that I can spit out names like there is no tomorrow but I can't do last names except for my main character and a few others. I also can't seem to get my other characters developed either. I know EVERYTHING about my one main character (he is a villain) to the point that I could write a book on him... As for the rest of my characters I can't seem to develop them very well. Should I just write a short bio or something? I usually include full name, age, height, weight and physical description...

    can anyone help me please?
     
  2. Elgaisma
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    Elgaisma Contributing Member Contributor

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    Write the book on him - talk to them, write some more.

    Absolute best way to develop a character is just like you would any other relationship get to know them,.
     
  3. R-e-n-n-a-t
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    R-e-n-n-a-t Contributing Member

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    Do you need last names for many people? A full intro on each character, complete with a last name could be counterproductive depending on the genre. Other than that, google 4crests.com. It's meant for family coats of arms, but they subsequently have about a thousand last names, specifically of the "Old World" variety.
     
  4. Mallory
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    Mallory Mallegory. Contributor

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    Putting stuff like height, weight, favorite color, birthday etc in your bios is almost always counter productive.

    Instead map out things like goals, biggest fears/worries (which leads to obstacles), motivations, what makes them happy, what makes them angry, what makes them tick (or get motivated), do they have any maturing points or other personality changes in the story and what causes them to occur, etc.

    Trying to use a "profile sheet" with surface details never works. :)
     
  5. drayelya
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    drayelya Member

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    Thanks

    OK, thank you all for the great advice, I'd never exactly thought of it those particular ways, guess it is a good thing to share often...:)
     
  6. blue-eyeddevil
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    blue-eyeddevil New Member

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    You could write bio notes on that person, you can use something like imaginator101 to give you lots of ideas, or you can re-imagine the personalities of people you already know. :)
     
  7. drayelya
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    drayelya Member

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    OK that sounds like a good Idea, I will try that then. Imagining others...oh and one more thing...my main character is an Eternal. He can live forever unless his is killed in some way...when he or others of his race die their bodies fade away...
     
  8. Mallory
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    Mallory Mallegory. Contributor

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    Sometimes you just have to plunge into it and write and watch the characters develop on their own. They may even surprise you. With character development, planning alone is not going to get you there. You have to do it as you write.
     
  9. ChickenFreak
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    ChickenFreak Contributing Member Contributor

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    I'd just keep trying different thought games until you find something that sparks creative ideas. It sounds like the height, weight thing isn't working for you, and I'm not surprised--it doesn't involve anything to do with character.

    One possible thought game: You could try wacky combinations of known personalities in new situations:

    "Captain Picard raised as a Victorian cockney."
    "Clark Kent without the superpowers."
    "Frodo Baggins all grown up as a corporate accountant."
    "Daffy Duck transformed into a best-selling thriller writer."

    And once that gives you an initial idea, try writing some throwaway scenes where that character is talking to another character, or maybe to someone that you know in real life.

    Anyway, it's one possibility. :)

    ChickenFreak
     

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